Mets Merized Online » new york post Wed, 22 Feb 2017 02:46:01 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Alfonzo and Abreu Among Candidates To Replace Lamar Johnson Tue, 30 Sep 2014 00:41:17 +0000 bobby abreu

Edgardo Alfonzo and Bobby Abreu have emerged as the leading candidates to replace Lamar Johnson as Mets hitting coach according to Mike Puma of the New York Post.

Abreu expressed interest in the job after his retirement on Sunday and according to Puma’s sources, Alfonzo was not very interested in the job before the season but would consider it if he was offered the position.

Last week, the Post reported that while the Mets might have interest in moving 3rd base coach Tim Teufel to that role, he is not currently interested.

Alfonzo was an extremely popular player in the ’90s. He hit .292 in 8 seasons in New York. He ranks 5th in Mets franchise history with 1136 hits. Alfonzo is also 9th on the Mets all time list with 120 home runs.

Abreu on the other hand is an all time great hitter. He is 103rd on the all time hits list with 2470, collecting most of those for the Phillies. He also collected 400+ hits for the Yankees and Angels.

Either would be a positive influence on the Mets and could potentially fit Sandy Alderson’s philosophy. Both could preach patience and one will likely become the next Mets hitting coach.

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Scout: ‘They Have Bigger Issues Than Shortstop’ Thu, 18 Sep 2014 20:45:17 +0000 wilmer flores

UPDATE (9/18/14 – 4:50pm)

Mike Puma’s report also talked about the idea that a major league scout believes the Mets would be better off trading for a left fielder. That would mean finding an internal solution at shortstop. Here’s what that scout had to say about the situation:

“If they went into the offseason and [Flores] is their shortstop and they don’t find anybody else, I mean, they have bigger issues than shortstop. Left field is probably their biggest need.”

Original Story (9/18/14 – 12:40pm)

While many think the Mets need to pursue a shortstop outside of the organization during the off season, it seems as though Sandy Alderson and the brain trust are getting comfortable with the idea of sticking Wilmer Flores there in 2015.

“We’re getting a lot more comfortable,” Alderson told the New York Post. “One of the reasons for giving [Flores] as much playing time as we have is to build up his number of plate appearances to get him more comfortable to try to establish sort of a baseline.”

Those plate appearances have mounted in 2014. He has had more than twice as many at bats this year as opposed to 2013 and his batting average is up year over year. In 2013 he appeared in just 27 games, hitting .211. Now he has his average at .246 and is making decisions more difficult for Alderson heading into 2015.

“There are a lot of things to take into account, the more recent at-bats I think are probably, one would hope, more reflective of his ability. At the same time, it is September and there may be a certain discount there, I’m not sure how much” (NYP).

Las Vegas 51′s manager Wally Backman might be Flores’ biggest fan.

“He’s the best RBI guy I’ve ever managed,” he said. “He can have some ugly at-bats at times, but he’s absolutely big-time in RBI situations. I hit him third this year and I had a few guys say, ‘You’re hitting him third?’ I said, ‘Just wait,’ and he drove in a ton of big runs. He just has a way of getting the job done in those situations. Keith was like that. The bigger the situation the better” (John Harper, Daily News)

After many a disparaging remark about Wilmer Flores this season and a clear reluctance to playing him until he was forced to do so, even manager Terry Collins is coming around on the 23-year old infielder.

“He’s shown that there’s no reason why if he continues to swing the bat the way he is, that he can’t be a middle-of-the-lineup, everyday shortstop.”

So while Harper points out that he’s no Troy Tulowitzki, maybe Flores can be the starting shortstop for a team loaded with young pitchers, looking for a power bat towards in the middle of the lineup.

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Gee to Make Next Rehab Start on Sunday with Cyclones Fri, 27 Jun 2014 12:52:46 +0000 dillon gee

Dillon Gee will make his next rehab start with the Brooklyn Cyclones on Sunday at MCU Park against the Staten Island Yankees.

Gee is expected to throw 30 warm-up pitches and 55 in-game pitches as he continues to rehab from a strained right lat muscle.

Adam Rubin of ESPN New York believes he will need one more rehab start to get his pitch count up to 70-75 pitches, meaning that his earliest return to the Mets rotation could come July 9. Initially expected to miss just one start, Gee has been out of the rotation for over six weeks.

The Texas native was having perhaps his best season yet, compiling a 2.73 ERA in 52.2 innings for the Mets before injuring himself.

It’s expected, but not assured, that Daisuke Matsuzaka will move back to the bullpen once Gee rejoins the rotation.

June 24

Dillon Gee made his first rehab start on Tuesday afternoon in Jupiter Florida with the Mets Gulf Coast Team.

Gee pitched two scoreless innings allowing one hit while striking out two.  He is anticipating two more rehab starts before re-joining the Mets.

A possible timetable for a return to the rotation could be as soon as 18 days.

June 20

Mets right-hander Dillon Gee is set to begin his rehab on Tuesday, pitching for the Gulf Coast League Mets.

The 28-year old Gee, who has been sidelined with a lat strain for over a month, is expected to make several rehab starts before rejoining the Mets.

“As good as I’m feeling, it’s still disheartening to think I’m still a couple of weeks from being in a game. But it’s just about building up innings at this point. It’s kind of like spring training all over again.”

Originally expected to miss just one start, Gee pushed himself too hard to return to the mound, and set himself back.

“I’m kicking myself like crazy because if I wouldn’t have done that I would probably be back right now,” Gee said.

The Texas native was having perhaps his best season yet, compiling a 2.73 ERA in 52.2 innings for the Mets before injuring himself.

mmo always believe

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Mets Want More “Attitude” From Syndergaard Fri, 18 Apr 2014 18:31:23 +0000 Noah_Syndergaard

Noah Syndergaard has a major league fastball and curveball, but the Mets would like to see a little more “attitude” from their top pitching prospect according to what team sources told the New York Post.

According to club sources, the stud right-hander disappointed organizational officials with his approach in his first two starts for Triple-A Las Vegas, but looked better on Monday after he was challenged by manager Wally Backman to bring more of a presence to the mound.

“Backman told him to be more aggressive and asked him who he wants to become,” said a person with knowledge of the conversation. “Does he want to become a middle-of-the-road starter or top-of-the-line starter? Syndergaard said he wanted to be a No. 1. He went out with a little more of an attitude on Monday.”

Syndergaard pitched five innings in his last start, allowing two runs on five hits. Overall he is 2-1 with a 3.94 ERA in three starts for Las Vegas.

The Mets are following the road map they used with Matt Harvey and Zack Wheeler before him which means Syndergaard will stay at Triple-A until at least late June to help keep the clock from starting on his Super-2 arbitration status.

Rafael Montero has been light’s out in Vegas, and will most likely get the call to the majors first. Many in the organization feel he is currently major league ready, and some felt that way at the end of last season.

Presented By Diehards

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Parnell Heads To DL With Partial Tear In Elbow Tue, 01 Apr 2014 17:26:15 +0000 bobby parnell Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

April 1

Bobby Parnell was diagnosed with an incomplete tear of the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow on Tuesday, the Mets announced.

After an MRI & clinical evaluation at the Hospital for Special Surgery in Manhattan, he received a Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injection and has been prescribed complete rest for approximately two weeks.

Looks like Jose Valverde is now the new Mets closer and that Vic Black may be called back up to the team.

Sounds like Parnell will be out for a while even if he doesn’t need surgery. The Mets say two weeks, I say double that…

I knew something was amiss…

Last night I wondered why he wasn’t held back to pitch in extended spring training rather than having him with start the season with the team when he was clearly not ready yet.

Hate it when I’m right about stuff like this, but I’ve been watching this team forty years. You kind of develop a sixth sense for these kinds of things…

So here’s your Mets Bullpen now:

Jose Valverde, Jeurys Familia, Scott Rice, John Lannan, Carlos Torres, Vic Black, Gonzalez Germen.

It could be worse… At least we saw Valverde come up big on Opening Day, first getting out of a bases loaded jam in the seventh, and then pitching a scoreless eighth that ended with him doing his signature leaping fist pump.

Glad we picked him up…

March 31

It was a rough Opening Day for closer Bobby Parnell who blew his first save opportunity of the season when he allowed the Nationals to tie the game with a ninth inning run.

Parnell was sitting mostly between 89-91 mph with his fastball, but did touch 92 twice among his 25 pitches thrown. His decreased velocity is a far departure from the 96-100 mph fastballs we’ve come to expect from him before he underwent neck surgery.

Also problematic was the fact that his fastballs were all flat with no movement at all. additionally, I don’t believe he threw his signature knuckle-curve once, which I thought was very odd as well.  

I don’t understand why Parnell was allowed to start the season if he wasn’t close to his usual self on the mound.

I thought the whole point of signing Jose Valverde was in case Parnell wasn’t ready to start the season?

It’s apparent to me that Parnell probably could have used one or two more weeks in extended spring training to continue building his arm strength, and with that a probable return to the velocity we’re accustomed to seeing from him. There’s clearly something not right with him.

And if you were going to say the hell with it and take Parnell north knowing he was still weeks away from his usual effectiveness, why not let him pitch in low-pressure situations and let Valverde close until he was ready to resume the stopper role?

No movement on a low-nineties fastball in the ninth inning doesn’t sound like a recipe for success for the Mets and today it wasn’t.

The bullpen was awful as a whole in their first test of the season, so the 9-7 loss to the Nats wasn’t all on Parnell.

But considering where he is right now in terms of his effectiveness, I question the wisdom of having him close games when his arsenal is nowhere near where it should be right now.

Presented By Diehards

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Nimmo and Plawecki Eager To Soak In Their First Big League Camp Fri, 14 Feb 2014 15:17:13 +0000 nimmo_2zeph9gs_yw6h0z3y

While the Mets plethora of pitching prospects often receives the most attention, they have some talented offensive players in the minors as well. In an excellent article for the New York Post, Fred Kerber spoke with Brandon Nimmo and Kevin Plawecki– two young hitters about to enter their first big league camp.

Nimmo, the 13th pick in the 2011 draft, had a great season in 2013 for the Mets Low-A affiliate in Savannah. In 110 games for the Sand Gnats, the Wyoming native hit .273/.397/.359 with 24 extra base hits while manning centerfield defensively. For his efforts, the Mets rewarded him with a invite to Spring Training.

“I told my dad, ‘If it feels this good to get called to big league spring training, I can’t wait to get the call up to the big leagues,’ ” Nimmo told Kerber. “I’m going there to learn. I’ll keep my ears open, my mouth shut.”

Plawecki, a catcher drafted 35th overall in 2012, had perhaps the most impressive 2013 of any Mets hitting prospect. The Purdue University product hit .305/.390/.448 with a staggering 47 extra base hits– including 38 doubles– while splitting his season between Low-A Savannah and High-A St. Lucie. The slugging backstop will join Nimmo in camp.

“Hopefully I can learn from all the guys at the big league camp, soak in and absorb all the information I can, pick as many brains as I can,” Plawecki tells the Post. “In baseball, it’s who can be the most consistent the whole season and who can ride the highs and not get down on themselves during the lows.”

Paul DePodesta, Mets Vice President of Player Development and Scouting, spoke about his talented duo.

“We were thrilled with the year [Plawecki] had,” said DePodesta . “He played in two pretty difficult environments but certainly more than held his own, especially playing such a premium defensive position.”

“We’re excited to see what this year brings,” DePo says of Nimmo. “He’ll be a 20-year-old while he’s in major league camp. He continues to get better, stronger, filling out as he becomes a man physically.”

These two are part of an impressive group of hitters in the Mets minors that may be getting overlooked. As a fan, you have to love the attitude these guys are bringing with them to camp. Neither is talking about turning heads or making the team. They know they’re simply there to learn. Hopefully this taste of the Show gives them motivation to continue to work hard to attain their goals.

Information from the New York Post was used in completing this article. 

Presented By Diehards

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New $250M Loan Puts Mets Owners On Easy Street Fri, 31 Jan 2014 21:19:21 +0000 fred wilpon

The Mets’ owners appear to be on the verge of finally putting the team’s financial problems behind them, according to a report in the New York Post.

Cash-strapped Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz, who faced perhaps an insurmountable spring principal payment on their $250 million loan, are close to refinancing the note, sources said.

“This will be oversubscribed,” a source considering investing in the Bank of America refinancing said.

The re-fi — the biggest off-field hurdle the team faced this off-season — will likely close in February or March, the source said. Until recently, it wasn’t certain investors weren’t going to insist the team owners pay down some of the loan to get the refinancing done.

Wilpon and Katz will not be asked for any cash paydown, sources said.

Plus, interest payments are expected to stay about the same, a source with direct knowledge of the situation said.

The beat goes on for Fred, Jeff and Saul. As I’ve been saying for five years now, they are not going anywhere. The lenders will do what they can to prevent them from defaulting because it is in their best interest to do so.

The legal language of this report, assuming its veracity, is that it is not restrictive pertaining to payroll or how much the Mets could spend on players.

However, keep in mind that the current payroll which is now at about $86.25 million, is still far short of the 2013 Opening Day payroll figure which stood at $93.2 million. So for all the talk of spending, all we really did this offseason was reallocate what money we already had committed to the team the previous year. We have not yet increased payroll one dollar with 18 days to go until the start of spring training.

This news has certainly saved the Wilpons’, but whether this benefits the team or not remains to be seen.

(Updated 4:00 PM)

Presented By Diehards

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Josh Satin Has Begun Learning To Play The Outfield Mon, 16 Dec 2013 15:03:03 +0000 josh satinJosh Satin has begun shagging flies and learning to play the outfield according to Mike Puma of the New York Post. This was planned for Satin back in September as he looks to become more versatile as a player and possibly take on a super utility role with the Mets.

“Realistically, I know the only way I’m going to be able to be on this team in the future is being able to play multiple positions,” said Satin. “That’s my hope, that I can show I can play a couple of different spots.”

In my opinion, Satin and his propensity to demolish lefthanded pitching has already earned himself at least a share of the first base job next season, and he should be good for at least 300 AB..

Satin has been a good soldier for the Mets. Knowing he was blocked at third base by David Wright, Satin learned to play second base and was named to two All Star teams while in the minors. He then took on first base where again was selected as an All Star. He has played all four infield positions and even had a game in left field before he was finally promoted to the Mets for good last season.

Satin is a grinder and a perfectionist and knows what his limitations are. If he feels he can give the Mets another reason to keep him handy by learning the outfield, then by all means go for it. Personally, if there’s one player on this team who can pull it off, it’s him.

With just 221 at-bats under his belt last season, Satin batted .279/.376/.409 with an .781 OPS and 123 OPS+ for the Mets. Against lefthanded pitching, he posted a .314/.409/.476 batting line in 94 plate appearances. I wish he had a little more power, but I’m looking forward to seeing his Act II in 2014.

Presented By Diehards

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This Day In Mets Infamy With Rusty: Random Thoughts On Granderson Sun, 08 Dec 2013 16:31:10 +0000 Orioles at Yankees

When the news broke late Friday morning that the Mets had finally came to an agreement with outfielder, Curtis Granderson I admit I did the proverbial  “happy dance” while driving in my car. Yes Granderson is not the “savior” that the Mets need to help this team escape from mediocrity as well as ineptitude. But his signing is a start and I do agree with Daily News columnist, Andy Martino, that his signing is the type of signing that shows other free agents that the Mets are trying to field a team that is trying to win.

Is Granderson a game changing free agent like Pedro Martinez or Carlos Beltran like the Mets signed before the 2005 season? No, but I feel he will be more of a leadership type ala Cliff Floyd, and a good complimentary player that will take the pressure off some of the other players including David Wright who now doesn’t have to do all the heavy lifting.

Is he worth the contract that he signed? Well he got a contract that reflects the robust free agent market this season. Would I have gone a fourth year? Obviously if I didn’t have to I wouldn’t, but hopefully by the end of his contract he will still be healthy enough to produce and that his career doesn’t mirror that of George Foster.

Lastly, I do not believe Mike Francesa’s “sources” that Jeff Wilpon had to twist Alderson’s arm to go the fourth year on Granderson. I’ll go with Mike Puma’s version of events, who tweeted that the fourth year was all Sandy. Now lets just hope the Mets GM can do some adding-on this week in Orlando.

And with that said….. HERE COMES THE INFAMY!!!

Mets alumni celebrating a birthday today include:

The original “Crazy Horse”, shortstop Tim Foli is 63 (1950). Foli was one of the players that was dealt in the trade that brought Rusty Staub to the Mets. The Mets would bring him back seven years later as a utility infielder.

Other transactions of note include:

The New York Mets purchased the contract of outfielder, Richie Ashburn from the Chicago Cubs on December 8, 1961. Ashburn was the first Met to ever bat over .300.

The New York Mets traded reserve infielder,  Elio Chacon and starting pitcher, Tracy Stallard to the St. Louis Cardinals for  outfielder, Johnny Lewis and middle reliever,  Gordie Richardson on December 8, 1964.

The New York Mets traded  former Rookie of the Year pitcher, Jon Matlack and power hitting first baseman/outfielder, John Milner to the Texas Rangers for first baseman, Willie Montanez, as well as reserve outfielders, Ken Henderson and Tom Grieve on December 8, 1977. This trade definitely goes down as one of the top 10 worst trades in Mets history!

The New York Mets traded fan favorite Jerry Koosman to the Minnesota Twins for future closer, Jesse Orosco and Greg Field on December 8, 1978. Koosman demanded to be traded when he saw how the Mets front office dismantled the team the season prior. M. Donald Grant granted Kooz his demands and it would take four years until we realized that the Mets got the better end of that deal.

The New York Mets traded utility infielder, Bob Bailor and spot starter/middle reliever, Carlos Diaz to the Los Angeles Dodgers for pitcher, Sid Fernandez and utility infielder, Ross Jones on December 8, 1983. This in my opinion was one of the biggest steals in Mets history

The Florida Marlins signed first baseman, Dave Magadan of the New York Mets as a free agent on December 8, 1992.I always felt is was a no brainer that “Mags” should have been the heir apparent to Keith Hernandez‘s job after “Mex” was let go. But the Mets management didn’t see him that way and paired him with various players in a platoon role. One has to wonder what coulda been if he was given the role full time.

The Florida Marlins signed starting pitcher,  Al Leiter of the New York Mets as a free agent on December 8, 2004. Although Mets fans saw Leiter as a clubhouse lawyer type it is not crazy to say that was one of the best pitchers over the last 20 years to wear a Mets uniform.

Mo Vaughn thinks the Grandy Man can!!! He was heard singing the confectionery jingle, “I Want Candy.”

Presented By Diehards

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Keep Dreaming Kernan Thu, 21 Nov 2013 16:06:58 +0000 robinson-cano3-540x422Robinson Cano is not the answer to the New York Mets problems.

A 31-year old free agent, Cano’s sticker price is somewhere around 10 years/$300 million. In fan speak that’s somewhere in the nosebleed section.

Which Major League Baseball organization is ready to invest in a player who will earn $30 million per season (assuming he earns $30 million per year) at age 38, 39, 40 and 41. The New York Yankees won’t. The Los Angeles Dodgers learned their lesson on trying to buy a championship; they’re not interested in Cano at that price. The Mets? Comical.

The dinner meeting between Jay Z, and Mets general manager Sandy Alderson is nothing more than hype. In fact, baseball insiders suggest the Mets are pawns in an attempt to get the crosstown Yankees to respond. No such luck.

The Mets are in no position to make an offer to Cano and here’s why: According to COT’s, the 2013 New York Mets payroll was $93,684,590. As reported, Cano is asking for $300 million over 10 years, or the equivalent of the Mets entire 25-man payroll over three years.

This is the “dream” that New York Post columnist is Kevin Kernan suggests fans and the organization buy into, both literally and figuratively? If so, recent history suggests such investments can quickly turn into a nightmare.

The Mets have to get into major buy mode … Dream along with me for a little bit more. Could you imagine if the Mets had Cano and Wright in the same lineup and how that would turn this town upside down … The Mets need to find a way to wipe away the face of failure that has been with them every day for years.

Two years ago, at age 31, Albert Pujols signed a 10-year, $240 million deal with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The deal was loaded with incentives above and beyond the $240 million guaranteed deal.

In 2001, Alex Rodriguez signed a 10-year, $252 million contract with the Texas Rangers. During his three years in Texas the team won 73, 72, and 71 games, finishing in fourth place every season. Rodriguez produced but the Rangers didn’t.

When the contract was signed, there was a lot of concern among not just Major League Baseball, but all sports for the dollars that were involved. In terms of what was going on in the economy and everything else five or six years ago, it really changed the economics across all of sport in a pretty dramatic way. What’s the real value of a player? — Harvey Schiller

The organization realized one player, regardless of his output, does not make a winner. Rodriguez — and his massive contract — were traded to New York.

I am certain the Mets human resources department is familiar with the residual effects of overpaying. Remember Bobby Bonilla? You should. He’s on the Mets payroll until 2035. Mind you, he hasn’t played in a major league game in more than a decade.

How about Prince Fielder? He signed a nine-year, $214 million deal with the Detroit Tigers prior to the 2012 season. Two years, zero rings and a lingering feeling in Detroit that this was a bad deal. As Jeff Passan at Yahoo! Sports noted in the aftermath of another disappointing post-season:

$46 million he made this year and last, and for the $168 million he will earn over the next seven seasons, and almost always the amount of money a player receives and the level of vitriol toward him for October letdowns are correlated … He is Prince Fielder, he signed the fifth-largest contract in baseball history and he will keep catching hell if he doesn’t start hitting.

Kernan added:

Remember the excitement when Mike Piazza was traded to the Mets from the Marlins. Imagine if the Mets could somehow pull off a deal to acquire someone as talented as Carlos Gonzalez or Giancarlo Stanton. The Mets would be a big-market team again.

Has Stanton made the Marlins a contender? No. In 2012 he was surrounded by Hanley Ramirez, Logan Morrison, Jose Reyes and Carlos Lee. The Marlins were loaded with great starting pitching: Josh Johnson, Mark Buehrle, Ricky Nolasco, Carlos Zambrano and Anibal Sanchez. The Marlins finished in last place in the National League East — behind the beleaguered Mets.

Don’t misunderstand. The Mets would be a better team with Gonzalez, Stanton or Cano, but at what price? Let’s face it, it’s highly unlikely the Mets will be playing for a playoff spot in 2014. Will one high-profile player put them over the top? No. The Mets need a handful of young, major league ready talent, not an aging veteran or an overpriced big ticket free agent. Improve the overall team, get competitive — quickly — then add the final pieces, either by free agent or trade.

Robinson Cano would not make the Mets a “big market” team again. The Mets are a big-market team, performing at a minor league level and operating on a small market budget.

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Boras Says Mets Interested In Everybody And Interested In Nobody Sun, 17 Nov 2013 18:06:20 +0000 sandy aldersonUntil the Mets add a legitimate piece to their roster this offseason, skepticism will surround general manager Sandy Alderson’s vow to spend writes Mike Puma of the New York Post.

Scott Boras recently summed up the Mets over Alderson’s three-year tenure:

“The thing with the Mets is they’re interested in everybody and interested in nobody.” Alderson is on the clock to make at least a ripple, if not a splash, this winter.

Alderson cited “payroll concentration” as the reason the Mets will avoid chasing the highest-priced free agents.

The team is expected to have a payroll around $90 million next season, but wouldn’t want nearly half that amount tied up in two players. As it stands, David Wright is scheduled to make $20 million next year.

That is exactly what I speculated during the GM Meetings when it was learned that the Mets would not pursue any players looking for $100 million.

At the time Alderson said this:

“We’ve been in that stratosphere once recently with David Wright,” Alderson said. “Those were special circumstances. I think it would be difficult to duplicate that again — not from a financial standpoint, just in terms of team-building. I think it’s difficult to concentrate those kinds of resources into very few players. It’s not really the way you build a quality, sustainable, winning team, I don’t think.”

Everyone assumed he was discussing a $100 million dollar player, but I believed Alderson was speaking unilaterally and that he was dismissive of having two players earning the same average annual salary as Wright at the same time.

In other words, even a player wanting a three year $50 million dollar deal like a Curtis Granderson or Jhonny Peralta as an example, would be prohibitive. Because he DOES NOT want two players tying up more than a third of his $90 million payroll. That was my point then, and that is what it is now, and I’m glad to see someone else come out with that.

“If you want to look at the data, the way we look at data and associate winning teams with payroll concentration, you realize there are limits to how effective an overall team can be with your payroll concentrated in a small number of players,” Alderson said. “It’s not an absolute rule, but it’s a pretty clear correlation. It’s a function of how much you have to spend.”

This is why they feel and I’ve been saying that they will be priced out on not only top free agents, but also mid tier free agents as well.

This is a bull market and teams have over $1.5 billion in new money to spend this offseason… Look for their biggest signature acquisition to come via a trade and brace yourself for a signature piece or two to be moved.

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Beltran Looking For 3-4 Year Deal, Red Sox Favorites To Land Him Sat, 09 Nov 2013 16:45:20 +0000 Three is a magic number.  Yes, it is.  It's a magic number.

Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports is reporting that right fielder Carlos Beltran is looking for a three or four year contract and is expected to reject Cardinals’ one-year, $14.1 million qualifying offer. That’s probably what the cards were hoping he does as they get ready to usher in the Oscar Taveras era.

Beltran, 36, is looking for a deal that will carry him to retirement and with a 3-4 year demand, it’s safe to say he likely ensures that no National League team will be in the mix for his services.

The Yankees, Phillies, Rangers and Orioles have already been linked to Beltran this offseason. But the likely favorites to land him are the World Champion Boston Red Sox who have shown the strongest interest in the eight-time All-Star, according to George King of the New York Post.

King cites a source who told him the the Red Sox would look to Beltran to replace the loss of Jacoby Ellsbury.

The former Met is coming off another solid season that saw him bat .296 with 24 homers, 84 RBI and an .830 OPS as he completed the final year of  the two-year, $26 million deal he signed with the Cards before the 2012 season.

The Red Sox have already made contact Beltran, according to a team source, and quite frankly they’re the perfect fit for him. Boston would lose a first round pick, but considering they pick 29th it’s not that drastic for them. I predict he’ll get a three-year deal for $36 million.

addicted to mets button
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Hits & Misses: Beltran To The Phillies? Tulo and CarGo Are Going Nowhere? Thu, 10 Oct 2013 16:40:27 +0000 carlos beltran

I read some scuttlebutt last night about the Philadelphia Phillies possibly honing in on free agent to be Carlos Beltran this winter.

If every free-agent signee were able to guarantee a replication of the previous year’s performance, Beltran would be No. 1 on the Phillies’ list. In 600 plate appearances for the Cardinals in 2013, he hit .296/.339/.491 with 24 home runs. More important than Beltran’s overall numbers is the fact that he is a switch-hitter who carries a career .289/.355/.523 batting line facing lefties from the right side of the plate. In other words, he would offer the Phillies’ left-heavy lineup more balance than virtually any other free-agent candidate.

The writer went onto speculate that the Phillies may face a strong challenge by the Mets in targeting the same middle tier options for the outfield.

This is relevant to the Phillies’ outfield situation mostly because the Mets’ outfield situation is the worst in the National League. How bad did things look at Citi Field? The middling .720 OPS posted by Phillies outfielders was 35 points higher than the one recorded by the Mets, by far the worst mark in the NL. Which means the two NL East rivals could end up going head-to-head even before the season starts, especially when you consider that both teams’ top draft picks are protected, meaning each can sign a top free agent without fear of surrendering a first-round selection (the Phillies are slated to draft at No. 7 overall, the Mets at No. 10).

Look, we weren’t getting Beltran anyway. Oh sure, we’ll hear all about how interested we were and how he’s all that, but in the end it’s the money. It’s always the money…

By the way… I totally forgot that the Phillies picked ahead of us… Not so sure I like that… Do you smell smoke?

carlos gonzalez

Colorado Rockies owner Dick Monfort has made it clear that he doesn’t intend to trade his two All-Star players Carlos Gonzalez and Troy Tulowitzki during the offseason.

“The plan is to keep them. Next year, yes. And my plan is to always keep them,” Monfort told The Denver Post on Wednesday. “Is that the smartest thing in the world to do? I don’t know. But for our fans I think it’s the best thing to do.”

Gonzalez batted .302 with 26 home runs and 70 RBIs this season despite playing in just 110 games. The left fielder missed the final two months of the season with a sprained right middle finger and opted against surgery after playing in instructional-league games last week in Arizona.

Tulowitzki, despite having missed just under a month because of a rib injury, again put up elite numbers for a shortstop, batting .315 and adding 81 RBIs to go along with his 25 home runs.

“I would say if Oakland, Tampa Bay and Pittsburgh can win, there’s no reason we can’t,” Monfort said.

The Rockies are in a similar financial position as the Mets and need pitching, while the Amazins need position players. They’d likely match up, but not unless the Mets were willing to part with Noah Syndergaard, Dillon Gee and probably another piece like Wilmer Flores for either of those players.

It’s still too early and things will change as they always do, but don’t put too much credence into anything that GMs say.

Remember some of the things our own GM said in the past like “re-signing Jose Reyes was the team’s top priority” and “we’re not shopping R.A. Dickey” and “the 2011 season is not a throwawy”?

The point is that most of the time when a GM says anything, assume the exact opposite. It always works for me…

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Have The Wilpons Grown Tired Of The Losing Too? Sun, 06 Oct 2013 23:34:16 +0000 sandy aldersonSo here’s the offseason blueprint… The Mets plan to attack this offseason by targeting players in the middle of the market and staying away from players at the top of the food chain. Apparently, this is the so-called “Red Sox model” we keep hearing about.

I don’t have a problem with that and there are plenty of prime opportunities available within that middle tier of free agency. What discourages me is if Sandy Alderson understands the fact that there will be 12-15 other teams out there targeting those same middle tier free agents the Mets will have their sights on.

We know from three years of observing how Sandy operates, he is one of those patient, wait-and-see general managers, who will wait out a market deep into February if he needs to.

So far, he’s yet to engage in a bidding war for any major league player and I question whether or not he has the capacity to see it through when push comes to shove.

It’s one thing when you’re the team that’s trading away a top performing major leaguer. But it’s something else completely when you’re the team going after a plus-player.

Alderson has been proficient at swapping major league talent for high-end minor leaguers, but how is he when the shoe’s on the other foot?

In a column for the New York Post last week, Joel Sherman said that there will be a lot of teams with available cash this offseason, thanks to the new national TV contract. He says the new deal infuses an additional $20-25 million annually for every team beginning in 2014.

Given that fact, it’s his contention, and one that  I wholeheartedly agree with, that the middle class of free agency is about to become the upper-middle class as the good-to-very good free agents are going to get bid up by multiple teams.

So how problematic will this upcoming dilemma be for the thrifty Mr. Alderson and how will it affect his promise to focus on “elite talent accumulation”?

Last Monday at Citi Field, Jeff Wilpon said something that sounded very much like a directive (or warning) to his general manager. “I want to get out of the hope business. It’s not a good business model,” said the Mets COO.

He’s right, hope is not a strategy…

The news last week, that SNY viewership is down over 30% from 2012, and over 50% from 2011 must have been a punch in the gut for the Mets owners as their usually reliable cash cow continues to see their revenues dwindle. As if the decrease in attendance wasn’t bad enough…

I interpret that to mean one thing… Not only will there be pressure to improve the team from an increasingly disinterested fan base… But it now appears that the owners may start applying some pressure of their own to get this team winning again as well.

I guess that’s a good thing, right?

addicted to mets button

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Mets To Refinance Debt Payment For Mid-2014, Losses Significantly Lower In 2013 Tue, 01 Oct 2013 12:57:42 +0000 alderson wilpon

According to a report in the New York Post, the Mets will be looking to refinance “roughly $250 million in bank debt”.

This is no doubt referring to the large note that becomes due in June of 2014, that we’ve talked and heard so much about. But thanks to the great job by Sandy Alderson, the lenders are thrilled and after huge losses in 2011 and 2012, a source told the post that the Mets only expect to lose $10 million in 2013. That’s quite a difference from the $70 million the team lost in 2011.

The Post says that “even if the franchise hits a home run with its lenders and manages to pull off the deal without paying any principal, it won’t affect the budget for players’ salaries next season.”

Yesterday, Sandy Alderson and Jeff Wilpon declined to comment on the payroll budget, but during an interview on WFAN, the Mets GM said it will be under $74 million.

A source close the lending group views the refinance as a “decent loan” and team owners remain confident that with the value of the team rising, they will not need to pony up any cash during the refinancing.

The Mets maintain they now are worth $1 billion dollars, up nearly $400 million since early 2012.

Meanwhile, Sandy Alderson continues to trumpet that the Mets will be aggressive in free agency this Winter despite the revelation that payroll will be down from the $74 million level of 2013.

He told WFAN’s Mike Francesa that he has the wherewithal to seek out a $100 million dollar player, while still dropping payroll. But in the next breath he sounded like while he could break the bank on one player, he likely won’t.

“The money that we have to spend, we could spend a majority on one player, we could spread it around, there’s a variety of ways to do it,” Alderson said. ”You can’t go in to the season with three or four below-average positions. We can’t get by with multiple positions that way.”

“I think we’re gonna have enough money available to make significant improvements, no question about that,” he said. “We’re gonna be aggressive, play the market and see what’s there.”

I really don’t see the Mets spending more than $20 million this season especially with the team only $10 million away from having their first profitable season during the four-year Sandy Alderson era.

Right now, that’s more important and the bigger priority because it will validate Bud Selig’s confidence in Sandy when he picked him to be the GM who could save the team for the Wilpons. That has always been Sandy’s primary mission.

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Byrd Promised To Teach Satin To Play Outfield This Offseason Tue, 03 Sep 2013 16:59:29 +0000 Marlon Byrd may be gone, but he still may have a big impact on the Mets going forward. You see, Before departing the Mets in a trade to the Pirates last week, the veteran Byrd told his Southern California neighbor Josh Satin that he will spend time this offseason teaching him to play the outfield, according to the New York Post.

Satin, who has been mainly a corner infielder throughout his pro career, understands that the more versatile he can make himself, the greater the odds are that he can stick with the Mets next season.

Personally, he’s already done and shown enough to warrant a guaranteed spot on the 25 man roster, but whatever…

New York Mets v Atlanta Braves

“Realistically, I know the only way I’m going to be able to be on this team in the future is being able to play multiple positions,” said Satin, who stroked two doubles in the Mets’ 13-5 loss to the Braves yesterday. “That’s my hope, that I can show I can play a couple of different spots.”

In my opinion, Satin and his propensity to demolish lefthanded pitching has earned at least a share of the first base job next season. Throw in the fact that he can also spell David Wright at third base and what you have is Justin Turner on the outs…

As to playing the outfield, why not?

Satin is a grinder and a perfectionist and knows what his limitations are. If he feels he can give the Mets another reason to keep him handy, then by all means go for it.

Personally, if there’s one player on this team who can pull it off, it’s him. And if it’s Marlon Byrd doing the training, then it’s all the better. Obviously, the idea isn’t that wild as the Mets had already been contemplating Satin in the outfield months ago after they called him up and finally saw for themselves what a great bat they had hiding in the minors being blocked by Ike Davis and David Wright for the last four years.

With just 145 at-bats under his belt this season, Satin has a .297/.407/.434 batting line with an .841 OPS and 139 OPS+ for the Mets. Against lefthanded pitching, he’s a one-man wrecking crew batting .343/.436/.522 slash that screams for his bat in the lineup whenever a southpaw is on the mound.

Satin is just another player I’m looking forward to see more of in 2014, and if he can handle himself well in left or right field, more power to him. I’ve been all over him like white on rice since the season started and couldn’t believe he didn’t make the team out of spring training.

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Is Juan Lagares An Everyday Center Fielder? Thu, 22 Aug 2013 02:50:49 +0000 juan lagares


Mets righthander Dillon Gee credits his improved performance to his defense because he doesn’t have to be afraid to pitch to contact, he especially singles out Juan Lagares.

“It gives you confidence to keep attacking because you know you’ve got guys out there that are playing hard and making all the plays for you,” Gee said. ”Juan tracks down everything out there in centerfield. It helps having that. Other than that, I’m throwing the ball probably the best I’ve really ever thrown it.”

Now after pimping Juan Lagares on MMO for the last two years, you didn’t think I’d let yesterday’s incredible defensive performance go unchecked did you? Check out one of his many amazing grabs in yesterday’s win over Minnesota…

I smile whenever I see Lagares make plays like that and it reminds me of when I asked the producers at SNY and their minor league analyst Toby Hyde last March why they spend so much airtime on Brandon Nimmo and yet none on Juan Lagares or Rafael Montero. “Because average Met fans don’t care about Juan Lagares or Rafael Montero… They just want to know about Nimmo, Wheeler and D’Arnaud.”

I bet they’d love to take those words back…

On Monday, Joel Sherman of the NY Post spoke to a baseball official who compared Juan Lagares to Michael Bourn:

Lagares has really impressed me, and our scouts and I think he’s a much better value — and very likely a better player than Bourn for 2013-2016.

He isn’t as polished right now, but he may be the best defensive center fielder in the NL right now with apologies to Andrew McCutchen.

He’s a young, cheap, high-upside piece for the future. I would rather have Lagares through 2016 than Bourn independent of the money because the former has more upside and is younger and will continue to improve.

Actually, that was a quote from me back in April – Nah, just kidding, I only called him the best defensive outfielder in the entire Mets system back then…

I love how some of the fans I follow on Twitter laughed when I said he was better than Matt den Dekker, and now these same people compare him to Andruw Jones, Tommie Agee and Carlos Beltran…. (Note to SNY: It’s Tommie not Tommy)

I’m not the least bit worried about his bat… He’s young and you can see him making adjustments and working things out. After hitting the ground running in the month of June and then slumping, he stepped in closer to the plate and responded with a .353 average in July. He’s now seeing a healthy diet of inside pitches as they try to back him off the plate, and Lagares has slumped badly in August batting .227. But he’s made another adjustment after some time in the cage with Dave Hudgens and is now 4-for-12 in his last three games and also got robbed of a couple of hits in that span.

Also this from ESPN’s Mark Simon:

Juan Lagares had a great game on the defensive side in Target Field with a couple of nifty catches, one of which should be under strong consideration for a No. 1 Web Gem from Baseball Tonight. The Mets entered Monday with the most No. 1 Web Gems of any team with nine.

Lagares, with 20, ranks second among major-league center fielders in Defensive Runs Saved. That measures ability to turn batted balls into outs and the deterrent value of throwing arms. Only former Mets outfielder Carlos Gomez has more (27).

I wrote Mark and added that Gomez had played 400 more innings than Lagares and had over 140 more fielding chances. Lagares could easily be the league leader if Terry Collins has simply stayed out of his way and played him…

At 24 and with nothing but upside ahead of him, Lagares has cemented himself in centerfield and expect Terry Collins to start utilizing some of his great speed at the top of the order before this season ends. As I’ve said before, the Mets have a lot of things they need to fix in the upcoming offseason, but centerfield isn’t one of them.

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Eric Young Is Drawing Rave Reviews As A Met, But Is It Sustainable? Fri, 12 Jul 2013 17:34:05 +0000 eric young points

Terry Collins had some high praise for Eric Young Jr. yesterday, in a conversation with the New York Post.

“The energy level has been raised since we got E.Y. and called up some guys from the minor leagues,” Collins said. “Andres Torres did a nice job last year when he wasn’t hurt, but certainly this year Young has made a big difference in our lineup.”

And even right fielder Marlon Byrd is happy to have Young patrolling the outfield with him and batting at the top of the order. “He’s the prototypical leadoff guy,” Byrd said. “I’m just so glad we have him over here.”

Ever since being acquired for starting pitcher Collin McHugh, Eric Young Jr. has been a spark plug at the top of the Mets lineup. He is hitting for a high average, and he has jolted the top of the Mets lineup with speed. Young’s speed has also made a difference defensively since he is a vast upgrade over the slow-footed Lucas Duda in left field. There is no denying that Young has been terrific so far, but is his performance sustainable?

There are a number of factors that make me skeptical about Young’s hot start. Before being traded to the Mets this year, Young was in the midst of an atrocious season. He was only hitting .240, with 1 HR, 6 RBI, 22 RS, 8 SB’s (4 CS’s) and 11 BB’s for Colorado in 57 games. In fact, he was performing so poorly that Colorado designated him for assignment.

Not only did Young struggle to produce offensively this year with Colorado, he struggled to produce his entire career. In 776 at bats with Colorado, Young has possessed .260/.329/.342 slash line with only 6 home runs and only 40 RBI. His numbers were also aided by an extreme hitter’s park in Coors field. In games played on the road, Young has hit under .230 in his career. It’s also important to note that Young isn’t a prospect that had struggled. He is 28 years old, which is considered the prime of a player’s career.

Young has been exciting to watch so far, but his success has come in a very limited amount of playing time. Just in this season alone, there have been many instances of players who have started their Met’s career s great like Young, but quickly faded away. John Buck, Collin Cowgill and Rick Ankiel also started their Mets career on fire like Young, but now Cowgill and Ankiel are no longer in the organization and Buck is struggling to maintain his average over the Mendoza line. How is Young’s great start any different from theirs?

Young’s 776 at bats with Colorado tell us more about the player he is than 93 at bats with the Mets. I think when all these facts are considered, it is unlikely that Young sustains his success. Even though Young has been a great addition to the team so far, I believe his success will be short lived.

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Buck Wasn’t Happy About Being Lifted For Pinch-Hitter Thu, 27 Jun 2013 12:51:54 +0000 john - buck

John Buck wen’t 0-for-4 in last night’s win over the White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field. He struck out all four time to earn the dreaded Golden Sombrero.

In my recap of the 3-0 win, I mentioned that it may be time to start giving Anthony Recker a few more starts – not so much because he’s that much better than Buck, I couldn’t honestly say that. But it would be good to find out exactly what Recker can offer, and maybe the extra time off would benefit Buck as well.

That said, with Buck owning a slash-line of .210/.272/.337 in 238 at-bats, I found it kind of odd that he would utter a word when he was pinch-hit for on Tuesday. In the top of the ninth with a runner on second and two outs, Terry Collins lifted him for pinch-hitter Daniel Murphy.

The Mets lost the game 5-4 , but afterward Buck said he was disappointed with the manager’s decision.

“That’s baseball,” said Buck. ”Terry doesn’t have to talk to me about that move; that happens. I wouldn’t expect him to talk to me about it. I was just frustrated with the loss. I thought we should have won that game and I was frustrated.”

Collins felt it necessary to explain his actions to Buck for several minutes before batting practice on Wednesday, according to the New York Post.

“The way things have been going,” Collins said, “I can’t sit there with Dan Murphy waiting to hit and not get him in the game.”

Looking at Buck’s career .234 batting average, I would think this wasn’t the first time he’s been pinch-hit for… neither would it be the last. Just make some contact, big guy… And zip it too…

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D’Arnaud Sheds The Boot, Should Begin Regular Workouts Now Mon, 10 Jun 2013 16:57:12 +0000 MLB: Spring Training-New York Mets at Detroit Tigers


Updated by Joe D. 6/10

Adam Rubin reports:

Seven weeks after fracturing his left foot, it looks like Travis d’Arnaud finally can shed the protective boot. Otherwise, this is a very odd tweet …

“I’m all smiles’” he added…

Updated by Satish on 6/3

The Mets official press release stated that d’Arnaud will remain in the boot for a week.

Travis d’Arnaud was seen today at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York for follow up on his fractured toe. Travis was cleared to begin weight bearing rehabilitation, but will remain in a boot for the next week.

Updated by Joe D. on 6/3

Travis D’Arnaud spoke with the New York Post today and told them that he will find out on Tuesday which workouts he’s permitted to start and was not cleared to remove the boot.

“I’ve got to wear the boot still,” d’Arnaud told The Post, adding that he’s unsure of a timeframe for its removal.

He had hoped to receive clearance to begin working out two weeks ago.

“A couple of weeks ago when I found out it was still broken it was real tough to take,” d’Arnaud said. “But there was nothing I could do except go home and relax and make sure my foot healed, and that’s what I did.”

Original Post 8:50 AM

Mets assistant GM John Ricco spoke to reporters and said that catching prospect Travis d’Arnaud is in New York this morning to be reevaluated by team doctors.

D’Arnaud, who suffered a non-displaced fracture of his first metatarsal in April, is still wearing the protective boot. The goal today is that doctors will find his foot sufficiently healed so that he can stop wearing the boot and head to Port St. Lucie to begin rehabbing.

“He hasn’t been able to run or anything like that, so it would really just be getting back into shape at first.

“He’s been able to do some upper body stuff,” Ricco said. “It’s gonna take time for us to know. We have to see where he is at. First things first. He has to be cleared and then we can get him out on the field to see where he is.”

Last year, D’Arnaud suffered a torn posterior cruciate ligament in June, and missed the rest of the season. Since then he’s played just 12 Triple-A games in the past calendar year. He was batting .250 before he broke his foot.

GM Sandy Alderson preached caution concerning Travis d’Arnaud on May 22 when he visited Gary Cohen in the SNY broadcast booth. Sandy was concerned that D’Arnaud has played in so few games in the past year due to injuries and said the first priority once D’Arnaud is healthy is getting his body used to playing baseball games again.

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Byrd Predicts He’d Hit Two Homers, Then Goes Out And Does It Thu, 06 Jun 2013 14:46:01 +0000 marlon byrd homers

Byrd’s the word these days for the Mets, as their veteran offseason signing continues to produce at a level far beyond what anyone expected.

Last night, Marlon Byrd struck again and this time he hit not one, but two home runs in the Mets 10-1 rout of the Washington Nationals.

Better still was the fact that Byrd predicted he’d hit two homers before the game during batting practice according to the New York Post:

“I was feeling good in B.P. and I was joking around with Anthony Recker,” Byrd said. “I said, ‘Hey, if I get some pitches tonight, get some strikes, I’m going to hit two home runs tonight.’ I didn’t think it was going to happen.”

But Recker said Byrd’s prediction wasn’t a joke.

“He was dead serious,” Recker said. “And he did it. That’s amazing to me. He called it. You don’t see that very often.”

Byrd is batting .255 for the season with 8 home runs and 28 RBI. Four of those home runs have come in his last eight games over which he is batting .318 with a .423 on-base.

babe ruth

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